Suppose you want to start selling good quality digital services but you aren’t so sure whether your potential clients will be willing to buy. Never mind the frustration that you can feel afterwards, wouldn’t it, sadly, be a waste of time, energy and resources if you crafted a project and the project was rejected?
No matter whether we are freelance bloggers, copywriters or journalists, most of us probably experienced something similar at one point or another during our solo work career. So how can we prevent this from happening and have your professional position secured while maintaining our autonomy?
In this article, we will discuss the ways to make sure you communicate your ideas about your future projects clearly so that your efforts don’t go to waste! As the heart of the matter is, pitching may be one of the most secure ways to guarantee the success we aim at.
What is a pitch?
If you have never heard of pitching in your career as a solopreneur, then don’t worry. You probably, intuitively, know what a pitch is. In fact, it is very likely that you pitched in your previous projects without knowing it.
Long story short, a pitch signifies contacting a potential client such as an entrepreneur, a director of a startup or an editor in order to present an idea that you have in your mind for a future project, hopefully making your client consider working with you on the project or gig you proposed.
These days, we as freelancers do most of the pitching online, usually via emails. Before we move further into the territory of pitching and discover the essence of the matter, we need to underline that 90% of pitching is about how to present ideas and convince potential clients to commit to the project we proposed.
Why is pitching important?
Anyone who is in the freelance business knows very well that the freelance arena is a diverse yet sometimes a very competitive one. Having a successful presentation and acquiring a new client is one thing, maintaining such professional ties and keeping a steady flow of projects is another.
Here are some of the reasons why pitching is more important than you think. Pitching helps you
- Create a solid base of clients
- Meet new clients and business partners
- Have a good headstart as a fresh freelancer
- Get future referrals and establish a wider network
- Have higher chances of being booked on a regular basis
How to perfect your pitch and land the job you want
Think of your pitch as your personal advertising campaign where you not only present your ideas, but also your abilities and dedication to your clients’ expectations and needs. First things first, the main answer to successful pitching is having clear ideas on some points.
- The target client or clients
- The exact nature of the freelance services you provide
- A profound understanding of the client’s needs and expectations
- The overall situation of the industry you are in
- A strategy for how to start a presentation and how to end a presentation
The bottom line that we want to emphasize here is that as a solopreneur, you should have a clear idea about what you are doing and where you stand before you start your pitch. Having a good understanding about these points will make you craft the perfect pitch to persuade your clients to trust your skills and wor with you.
Focus on the client’s needs and expectations
Knowing the needs and expectations of your present and future clients is one of the most important things for preparing an efficient pitch. With this knowledge, you can create the most suitable project for your client and present it in an appealing way.
Taking the medium or the platform where your client is active into consideration is also a good idea. For instance, pitching for a blog, a popular webpage, a YouTube channel or an online newspaper will probably require different strategies.
Show examples of your work
Even if you just started doing freelance gigs, having a portfolio is always a good idea. Present some selected items of your portfolio to your clients so that they can grasp your style and the kind of work you do. Painting an accurate picture of your business personality is very important, for it prevents future misunderstandings.
There are different ways to demonstrate your previous works. Here are some ideas that you can use while presenting your portfolio to your clients;
- Send your CV attached to the pitching email
- Give link(s) to the relevant websites where your work has been demonstrated
- Make a PDF file or a high quality presentation of your portfolio
- Shoot a short video where you summarize your work and send it to the client
Mention relevant testimonials
What is better than vouching for yourself? A previous client or a colleague vouching for you by writing a testimonial! While pitching, directing your future clients to your previous testimonials is an effective way to ensure that your client is well informed about the essence as well as the quality of the freelance services you provide.
This will make clients more willing to keep an open mind about your pitches and increase the chance of your pitches to be accepted. Once you manage to get your pitch turned into an actual project, you can ask for new testimonials.
Provide a free analysis or consultation
One other thing you can do as a professional solo worker is offering a free analysis or a session of consultation. This way you can present your analysis and business skills and answer any questions that your client may have.
Offering a free-of-charge consultation shows your client that you are confident about your project and that you have the required expertise to address any concerns about the potential project. Such an analysis or a consultation will make your client trust your competence and professionalism. It can also increase the probability of your pitch being accepted and transformed into a full fledged project.
Introduce your previous clients
Previously, we underlined multiple times that pitching is mostly about making a good presentation and advertising your work. This includes making the spectrum of your clients (like individuals, companies, startups and brands) visible.
Don’t forget to mention your previous clients as your work and relationship with them will be among the building blocks of your portfolio. The mere existence of such a list of clients will empower your pitch and incentivize your potential clients further to accept your proposed project.
Share your contact information and social media accounts
Being a freelancer in our age requires being as active as possible on certain social media platforms. Having work-related social media accounts increases your visibility and makes you more accessible to the clients.
Don’t forget to share your contact information such as your professional email address (or business number) on your social media accounts. Depending on the nature of your job, you can prioritize certain platforms and highlight your activity there, or keep other accounts in the background if they seem less relevant to your industry or nature of work.
No matter which strategy you go with, remember that linking your social media accounts and adding your contact information to your pitch is not enough. You should also be active on the platforms that you direct your clients to. After all, having an Instagram or a LinkedIn account where you are unable to engage with project-related direct messages or comments wouldn’t be very helpful.
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